US Congressman Dr. Andy Harris (R) of Maryland and Congressman Andy Barr (R) of Kentucky yesterday visited Oz VeGaon as part of a tour of Gush Etzion organized by the YesIsrael Project headed by Ruthie Lieberman and Sarah Paley.
The congressmen heard from Yehudit Katsover and Nadia Matar about the establishment of the reserve as a Zionist response to the murder of the three youths and especially the importance of applying Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria.
The two conveyed a clear message that President Trump's Deal of the Century plan should not include Israeli withdrawal from Judea and Samaria which they said would be a disaster not only to Israel but also for the United States. They defined American interest as stability in the region, saying there can only be stability if there is only one sovereign nation between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River – Israel. The two also said:
- Israeli withdrawal from Judea and Samaria would engulf the area in radical Islam just as it did in Gaza. "Palestinian" leadership has extensive ties with the Ayatollahs. If Israel does not control the area, the Ayatollahs can obtain intelligence bases in Judea and Samaria including landing rights and an airport;
- A Palestinian State would mean a death sentence for the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and act to the detriment of Saudi Arabia, the Arabian Peninsula, opening the way for Russian and Chinese influence into the region;
- The Palestinian leadership's record is known as subversive and terrorist, even for Arabs – such as the intervention with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, as well as in Kuwait;
- It's time to change direction: Instead of a plan in which Israel once again has to give up and withdraw, a method that has failed over the past 100 years because of Arab recalcitrance – a plan that serves the Americans, the Israelis, and local Arab interests (as most of them secretly prefer Israeli sovereignty) – a plan to apply sovereignty; i.e., applying Israeli law over Judea and Samaria, the Land of the Bible, the birthplace of the Jewish People for 4,000 years.
Gush Etzion Council head Shlomo Neeman related his personal story that he came from the Soviet Union, where Stalin established a state for Jews in Birobidzhan but the Jews didn't want it, they dreamed of the Land of Israel. "Here is the place of the Jews. This is where the normal life of our people should be – in the Land of the Bible. This is the natural situation and indeed, in 1948 the US supported the establishment of the State of Israel. Israel remembers her friends," said the Gush Etzion head. "In Jerusalem there are streets named after the countries that voted for us in UN vote of 1947. We thank you for your enduring friendship.”
Congressman Andy Barr replied: "Thank you very much for your hospitality. Thank you for showing us this beautiful land. Especially the symbolism of this place, and cleaning up the trash, cleaning up the garbage (in Oz veGaon) is a symbol of what Israel is doing at large, which is renewing its claim to its Biblical Homeland and we will share this (Sovereignty) message with our colleagues in Congress and our constituents in the United States as we echo your sentiment that a strong Israel and Israeli Sovereignty is an interest not just of the Jewish People but of the United States as well."
Congressman Andy Harris said: “I associate myself with the remarks of my colleague, specifically you make a very good point that what happened in 1948 can't be a one-time deal and that is, is the world needs reminding that Israel is the Jewish State, it's historically based and it's important for world peace. And it's a shame that the world needs to be reminded about that. But we will continue to remind the world. Thank you."
Also participating in this visit was Anthony Adma from Canada, the head of a Christian organization for Israel’s sovereignty in the Land of the Bible.
At the end of the visit, the two congressmen planted two olive trees, while blessed rain watered the trees and the staunch friendship with Israel, a viewpoint originating from and based on the Bible.
Rabbi Tuli Weiss, head of the 365 Organization for deepening Bible awareness and connection to the Land of Israel, read verses from Amos, Chapter 9:
And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink their wine; they shall also make gardens, and eat their fruit. And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be plucked up out of their land which I have given them, says the Lord your G-d.